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Survive, Adapt, Thrive: eCommerce Strategy in 2021

2020, for many eCommerce businesses, became a year that solely consisted of simply surviving the twists and turns of a global pandemic. 

That in itself presents an opportunity – we’ve gotten more nimble and likely much more aware of the details of everything that can impact a potential customer experience. We’ve spent a lot of time ‘surviving’, and sometimes adapting, but how do we take that forward into our thinking and go further?

When hard times hit, we consult our own clients on a simplistic yet highly effective methodology…

Survive, Adapt, Thrive. 

It can be hard to get out of a survival mindset and into a growth mindset, especially after last year’s events. But those businesses that have set themselves a definitive goal and strategy will have a much easier time moving forward in 2021. 

The purpose of implementing a business strategy and plan is simple; to secure success and growth for your business. It also allows you not to be so much at the mercy of ‘unprecedented times’.

A clear business vision is often the difference between those that survive and plateau, and those that thrive. It doesn’t have to be complicated, nor does it require weeks of detailed planning. Let’s start out simple, and build from there the more successful we get with our planning. 

What does success look like for your eCommerce business?

As an agency, jointly responsible for the success of a multitude of eCommerce brands, we make it our business to ensure all on our rosta have a strategic plan and a definitive growth goal in place, which we work closely with clients to build. Before even embarking on a project with clients, we ask these questions;

What does your version of success look like? How much do you want your business to grow in the next 12 months? What about five years? What does success look like in your roles? What are the benchmarks?  

Side note; If your current agency isn’t asking these questions, you’ve got yourself a reactive agency. That’s fine, it means you need to do all the heavy lifting on strategy, so this is something that will benefit you considerably. 

Thriving in ‘unprecedented times’

When the events of 2020 hit, the business and professional goals of our clients did not just disperse into thin air, because they’d been predetermined and were written down in black and white. We knew exactly how we were going to support our clients in adapting their business strategies during 2020 to ensure that our clients were not out there trying to survive the rough ride alone. The alignment was clear, we knew there was a stage of adapting to the pressures that were mounting, but we also knew that for online we could carve out a complementary path to success.

Of course, we can’t give away our client’s full business models to explain how and why they ended 2020 with phenomenal sales figures and a comprehensive plan to thrive in 2021! But we can use our own example of how we utilised the ‘Survive, Adapt, Thrive’ methodology to ensure a client’s success, and it looked something like this; 

Survive early 2020: Reacting to the changing times by enabling employees to work from home full time. (Because they were forced to, or otherwise)

Adapt in mid-late 2020: Empowered their employees to look after their mental health at home by providing virtual yoga sessions and set budgets for home equipment such as desks and chairs so they can work comfortably. (They also jumped on JH’s programmes, early on, to get out there really early)

Thrive in 2021: Switch from being reactive to proactive. Deliver a recruitment strategy that will allow their teams to continue growing with the right people, who are looked after and supported by the programmes that were put in place to survive and adapt in 2020. (Now they’ve recruited somebody they could only dream of having previously, because location is no longer an issue and the office isn’t the centre of their thoughts)

Join our workshop?

If you’d like to learn more about the tools and techniques we use to help our clients plan their business strategies and growth models, we’re running a series of invitation-only workshop events. Email jamie@wearejh.com to request a space and date.